View Full Version : This years surprise contender?

12-19-2011, 02:17 AM

3. Who is this season's Memphis -- the surprise contender?
Every season does not produce a Memphis, a team in 2010-11 with a great mix of young talent and veteran studs that played incredible defense down the stretch. But we do have some teams that might sneak into the playoffs and do some damage once they get there.

It goes without saying that a Clippers team with Chris Paul will be much better than last season, and replacing Al-Farouq Aminu with Caron Butler makes L.A. even better. Who would want to play the "Blake and Paul Show" in May? It's just as obvious that the Knicks' new frontline will help propel them to better things this season.

Houston, meanwhile, had the league's top offense after the trade deadline and made a strong playoff push. The loss of Chuck Hayes will hurt, but if Kevin McHale can help Hasheem Thabeet and Jordan Hill step toward their potential as defenders, or if GM Daryl Morey can use the team's considerable assets to add a top-tier small forward or center, Houston can make a big jump.

Indiana, however, is primed to be the bigger surprise. In second-year wing Paul George and newly acquired David West, the Pacers should feature a defense that by season's end could be suffocating.

One last dark horse, perhaps my favorite to be this year's Griz is the Nuggets. With Nene returning, Denver has the pieces to be very good. It may take more seasoning, but by March I'd guess Ty Lawson will be playing a very high level and Denver, which has always been able to score, will be a top-8 defense and a team capable of making the West finals.

12-19-2011, 02:25 AM
When the lockout was ended, I started thinking about the Knicks who in 1999 went to finals as an 8th seed in a shortened season. I think we could be that team.

El Pacero
12-19-2011, 02:31 AM
When the lockout was ended, I started thinking about the Knicks who in 1999 went to finals as an 8th seed in a shortened season. I think we could be that team.

Do not get me too excited! (por favor)

12-19-2011, 12:10 PM
Outside of Boston, Miami, and Chicago. I just don't see that many teams who are VASTLY better than Indiana.

New York do have Melo, Amare, and Chandler. However, I believe Amare will have his hands full with David West, while Hansbrough will wear out whatever 2nd unit PF they have. I believe that Hibbert and Chandler could be a wash. I would give the edge to Melo over Granger. From there, I believe we have the stronger PG/SG players.

Orlando....they might screw themselves. My predictation is that they will have a bad start to the season, do a panic trade of Howard to New Jersey, but neither team will have enough time to develop team chemistry and will "squeak" into the playoffs.

As for the other teams, Indiana is pretty much strong to great at all positions with good to strong talent coming off the bench. The other teams wouldn't have the bench depth to compete with us.

Indiana should easily be able to get a seed from 4 to 6. If you want my predictation, Phildelphia would be the team to watch. They seem be to the true sleeping giant of the East.